Rocket Launched at Israel From Lebanon, IDF Responds With Artillery Fire

IDF artillery corps seen near the Israeli border with Lebanon, on Feb. 18. (Michael Giladi/Flash90)

A rocket fired from Lebanon hit an open area in Israel early Monday and IDF artillery “targeted the source of the launch,” the IDF said.

The IDF said that an explosion was reported shortly after midnight near Kibbutz Metzuba, just miles from the border with Lebanon.

The IDF said no sirens were sounded and no alert was declared in northern Israel when the rocket, which it did not identify in its posting, struck.

The Iron Dome anti-missile defense system does not necessarily intercept projectiles if they appear to be on track to hit unpopulated areas.

The Hezbollah-affiliated Al-Akhbar newspaper said a rocket was shot from the area south of the city Tyre.

Attacks on Israel from Lebanon are generally perpetrated by Palestinian factions in the country. An Israeli defense official said the rocket likely was fired by a Hamas-affiliated Palestinian terrorist cell.

Aroldo Lazaro, head of the United Nations Interim Force In Lebanon (UNIFIL), urged “calm and restraint in this volatile and ongoing situation,” the mission said.

An exchange of fire has been rare between Israel and Lebanon since the 2006 Second Lebanon War with Hezbollah. Last August, a rocket attack from Lebanon wounded several Israelis.

Israel has seen a wave of violence in recent weeks, with Yerushalayim’s Old City serving as a flashpoint for clashes that threaten to destabilize other areas, including Israel’s border with the Gaza Strip.

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